TRAVEL

Hotel Bel-Air Staycation

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It’s a rare occasion for us to have a little staycation here in LA but after our stay at the Hotel Bel-Air, I think we’re going to change that! It’s so nice to get to experience your city from a whole new perspective. Even though we live 15 minutes from Bel-Air, we felt like we were in an entirely new place & the boys loved the opportunity to “get away” without having to travel far.

hotel bel-air los angeles staycation

We chose the Hotel Bel-Air through Ebates & it was the most genius thing we’ve ever done! Not only was the hotel choice perfect for us (if you’ve never been, add it to your list!) but we were able to get 10% Cash Back for Travel Thursday! This was my first time using Ebates for booking travel but I’m already looking for another hotel to book today because who can resist 10% Cash Back? I’ll find any excuse for an adventure. 🙂

ebates travel thursday hotel bel-air review hotel bel-air kids

As you can probably tell from the photos (& if you saw my Instagram Stories), we had the most incredible stay at the Hotel Bel-Air! This was my first time staying there & I can’t get over how incredible the hotel, staff & environment was. From the second we pulled in, every member of the staff was beyond helpful & so kind to us AND the boys (which isn’t always the case with hotels & kids). The entire property is beautiful & we loved that it felt like we were staying at a large estate. With multiple grass areas, fountains & even swans, the boys were in heaven!

hotel bel-air restaurant hotel bel-air food

Another favorite was the food (you didn’t think you would read about one of our adventures & not hear about the food, did you?!). You guys know I’m all about the food when we travel & I’m still dreaming about the blueberry pancakes with a side of potatoes I ate. Yes, they were that good!

ebates cash back hotel bel-air family friendly ebates travel thursday cash back

I also wanted to add a few little tips for staying in hotels with kids because we get asked this quite often. The goal when staying in a hotel with kids is to make them as comfortable as possible. It’s not always easy for little ones to be out of their home environment & so making them feel as “at home” as possible is a necessity. Over the past 5 years, we’ve figured out that bringing all their special nighttime things & keeping their nighttime routine the same makes the stay so much easier. For us, that includes a sound machine, the boys’ loveys (stuffed animals they sleep with every night) as well as their small soft blankets. Your kid’s favorite things might be a bit different but bringing a little piece of home with you to the hotel can make an incredible difference in your stay & is the perfect way to get kids used to travel!

ebates travel cash back los angeles family hotels

Now to sum up our stay in a few words… It was perfect. If you’re looking to book travel anytime soon, don’t miss out on 10% Cash Back at Ebates hotels and more, today only for Travel Thursday!

*Special thanks to Ebates & ShopStyle for sponsoring this post!

kauai travel guide

Kauai Travel Guide

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We’ve been to Kauai a few times now & I fall more in love with this island every time. There is something so magical about Kauai & I feel like everyone should experience it once in their lifetime. It’s that magical! Trust me, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about when you get there. Below you’ll find all of our tried & true places. I hope you enjoy our Kauai travel guide!

kauai kids travel guide

Where To Stay:

-Kauai Marriott:

We’ve stayed here twice & I absolutely love this resort! We spent both of our Babymoons here & it will always be one of my favorite places to stay. The service is always on point & by that I mean that every person I’ve come across working at this property has been kind & helpful. Also, they have the best breakfast buffet. Guys, I dream about it. It’s that good! My pregnant self was one happy lady because of the breakfast alone. But in all seriousness, I highly recommend staying here. The food, the service, the pool (& kids pool with slide), the beach, the restaurants on property are all amazing. I have nothing but wonderful things to say!

-Hilton Garden Inn:

This last time we went to Kauai, we stayed here. While I was a little nervous at first because the reviews online are a bit hit or miss, we had a great experience! While it’s a much smaller property than the Marriott, the service was amazing & everyone was always helpful & kind to our boys. The pool is honestly nothing to write home about but the property sits right above Lydgate Beach Park & so we would just walk down to the beach & enjoy the little areas blocked by the rock wall (read more on this beach below!). The rooms were great & while this isn’t as much of a resort feel, we loved our stay & thought it was perfect with our young boys!

things to do Kauai

Where To Eat:

-Verde:

If you don’t know by now, I’m a bit mexican food obsessed. Like I could eat it for every meal & pretty much eat hot sauce/salsa on everything I consume. When I discovered Verde, I was in heaven. The food is just that good!

-Eat Healthy Kauai:

I could eat an açaí bowl from here every morning. I posted about these on my Instagram & I was not exaggerating about how much I love this place! If you’re in the mood for some delicious & healthy meals, don’t miss this place!

-Tropical Taco:

We’ve been going to this place since our first trip to Kauai & it never disappoints. I always get the vegetarian Fat Jack & while it’s not the healthiest, it’s beyond delicious! They also have really good fresh tacos & hot sauce!

-Da Crack:

Can you tell by now that I really love Mexican food? We discovered this little spot (& I do mean little, you order from a tiny window & take your food to-go!) late one evening & the burrito bowls & burritos were SO good!

-Scorpacciata:

If you’re in the mood for some pizza, definitely stop at this food truck! Kannon couldn’t get enough of the pizza while I couldn’t get enough of the Parmesan Fries with Pesti Ailoli.

-Wailua Shave Ice:

This is hands down my favorite shaved ice I’ve ever eaten! I like that they use natural ingredients as opposed to that neon colored syrup. The Love Potion #9 is my latest favorite!

-Ono Ono Shave Ice:

This is my second favorite place for shaved  ice. While Ono Ono does serve the neon colored syrup, it is Adam & the boys favorite spot. I do love the different flavors of ice cream they have for under the shaved ice though! The macadamia nut is a must try!

-Tropical Dreams Hawaiian Gourmet Ice Cream:

Clearly we have major sweet tooth’s over here but if you’re in the mood for some ice cream, this is the place to go!

What To Do:

-Poipu Beach:

While I’ve heard some say that this beach is overrated, I completely disagree. This is one of our favorite beaches on Kauai because it’s perfect for kids, snorkeling & everytime we’ve been there, we’ve seen a turtle &/or seals! This last time we visited, we had a sea turtle swim up on shore & bask in the sun for hours. The best thing we’ve ever experienced at Poipu? Swimming with seals! Okay, technically we didn’t swim with them but the last time we were there, multiple seals were in & out of the water playing & swimming. While it’s a federal law to not get too close to any of the sea creatures, the lifeguards weren’t paying attention & when we looked down & next to us, the seals were right there! I’m not exaggerating either, they were right next to us. Don’t worry, the second we saw them we got out of the water, but it is so fascinating to see these animals in the wild!

-Lydgate Beach Park & Kamalani Playground:

This beach & Park is right by the Hilton Garden Inn that we stayed at this last time. We absolutely love this beach because it has a rock wall that blocks out the waves so you don’t have to stress as much about your little ones playing in the water. Plus, if you’re terrified of sharks, you don’t have to worry about that either! (Yes, those are things that I think about because sharks are terrifying (in my opinion) Although I have swam with them in a cage once & am completely fascinated by them :)) AND the Kamalani Playground is so much fun for the kids! We spent an entire afternoon letting the boys run around this playground, swing & go down the slides. This playground is like nothing I’ve ever seen before & the boys didn’t want to leave!

-Helicopter Tour:

This is by far one of the coolest things I’ve ever done! We did this tour back when I was pregnant with Kannon & it was incredible. The views of the Na Pali Coast can’t be beat & we loved landing at the waterfall where Jurassic Park was filmed. I highly recommend splurging on this activity, you won’t be disappointed!

-Na Pali Coast Hike to Hanakapi’ai Beach:

I’m going to be honest & tell you that I’ve actually never finished this hike. Everytime we’ve gone to Kauai I’ve been pregnant or we’ve had the boys & it’s been raining on & off so the rocks were slippery. I will say that this hike is beautiful though & I can only imagine how beautiful Hanakapi’ai Beach is at the end!

-Ke’e Beach:

We love driving to North Shore & this beach sits right at the end of the road. This is a must see!

-Waimea Canyon:

Kauai is full of places that make you say, “ is this real life!?” Because they’re that stunning. Waimea Canyon is one of those places! It’s referred to as “The Grand Canyon of the Pacific” & it’s breathtaking. This is great for all ages because you can drive to the top & then walk up some steps (or a ramp) to see the stunning view.

-Kayak Wailua River or Hanalei River:

If you love to kayak or have never been kayaking, Kauai is the place to go! It’s beautiful & calm & you can even take your little ones! Kannon was 2 when we went & he just sat in between us with a life jacket on. This is the place we used when we kayaked Hanalei River & the people were beyond helpful & kind.

-Na Pali Experience:

This is something that I will do the next time we go back to Kauai! I have heard nothing but incredible things about this experience & I can’t wait to do this one day!

Kauai Outfit Roundup

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Since I get asked so often where I get certain pieces of clothing, I figured it would be easier for everyone to just put together a full post for my Kauai outfit roundup. All of the pieces I wore are linked below 🙂

kauai outfit

I am completely obsessed with this bikini! The floral print mixed with the ruffle straps makes me feel so feminine & I just absolutely love it. I also have the one shoulder top & love that version as well! Would it be too much to get the one piece version as well!? Probably, but it’s the cutest print!

I wear these denim shorts far too often but they are the best jean shorts I have ever found. They are a bit high waist so they cover up that part of my stomach I’m still a little self conscious of (hello, stretch marks!) & they’re not too short that I feel uncomfortable wearing them. Yes, they’re obviously short shorts, just not too cheeky, if you know what I mean 🙂


urban outfitters jumpsuit

I have an obsession with jumpsuits lately & I love that this one is under $80 & comes in 3 colors!

 
lspace one piece
Ever since having 2 kids, one piece swimsuits & high waist denim shorts have become my best friends. It’s not that I’m ashamed of my body, it’s just what I feel comfortable in! This striped one piece is my current favorite. I love the thick straps & this is the perfect suit to play around with my boys & not have to worry about anything slipping out. If you’re a mom, you know that is a major plus!
 


forever 21 overall shorts

While I always feel like I’m back in the 5th grade when I wear overalls, I secretly love them. I love the denim shorts take on the classics & these were a total steal!

This is another bikini that I’m loving! I love the off the shoulder top & love that this one has the wrap around detail. Yes, I say love too much but hey, it is what it is!

 


urban outfitters white jumpsuit

This jumpsuit was one of those purchases where I thought, “this looks cute online but will probably look so awkward on me”. But when I first tried it on, I knew I wanted to bring it to Hawaii! Such a different piece for me but like I said above, I’m loving jumpsuits lately.

 
asos gingham dress
I feel like this dress speaks for itself. The classic print in a feminine color, the bold sleeves, & the slight ruffle at the hem sold me on this one!
 

makeup bag

What’s In My Makeup Bag – Kauai

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I am notorious for being an “over packer”. I’ve never been one of those people who can just bring a carry-on (& I don’t think I ever will be!) BUT I have gotten much better at packing less & I feel so much better on trips!

The one thing I’m SO bad at overpacking is makeup. I don’t know why but i always feel like i need to pack more just in case something breaks. Just typing that out makes me feel absurd. I rarely have makeup break on me so it’s quite possibly one of my more irrational worries haha. But since I’ve been trying to pack less in general, I have to include my makeup bag. So I figured I would share what’s in my makeup bag for our trip to Kauai!
I kept my makeup pretty minimal & only brought holy grail products in my makeup bag because let’s face it, those are my most reached for products anyways 🙂
Are you an over packer or a light packer? Comment below!

Jouer Anti-Aging Moisture Primer

Becca Anti-Fatigue Under Eye Primer

IT Cosmetics CC Cream in Light

Nars Radiant Creamy Concealer in Vanilla

Benefit Ka-Brow in Shade 2

Pixi Beauty MultiBalm in Sheer Sculpt

Becca Sunlit Bronzer in Capri Coast

Jouer Adore Blush Duo

Laura Mercier Face Illuminator in Indiscretion

Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray

Maybelline Colossal Big Shot Mascara

Jouer High Pigment Gloss in Champs Elysees

 

 

best tacos in los angeles

Best Tacos in Los Angeles

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Guys, this is not click bait… I found THE BEST tacos in Los Angeles & I need to share them with you guys in case you’re in the area or coming to visit at some point! I am kind of a Mexican food snob & I am 100% obsessed with Chicas Tacos in Downtown Los Angeles. Not only do they have the best tacos in Los Angeles, but they also have THE best sauces & nachos. Their green sauce is so incredible that next time I go back, I’m bringing home a few jars!

 top tacos los angeles

We stumbled upon this place at random one day while wandering around downtown & since then, I daydream about it daily. I also want to just talk about how incredible the exterior & interior is (which was what brought us to this spot in the first place)! Plus, we met one of the guys who own it & he was such a nice guy. He was making sure everyone was happy & it sold me on this place even more!

chicas tacos los angeles chicas tacos dtla best tacos DTLA

I know this might seem a bit over the top but I just couldn’t wait to share this place with you guys! It is seriously a must try! So if you live near Los Angeles or are planning a visit, don’t miss out on Chicas Tacos. I promise you won’t regret it!

 

Outfit Details:

Keep It Rad Tee

Distressed Denim Jacket

Distressed Black Denim (similar)

Gold Star Sneakers

 

Rome Vlog Day 1

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I fell in love with Rome all over again this trip.

I’m so excited to share this adventure with you all! Make sure & subscribe to see the rest of our trip & all of my videos in the future!

Travel with kids

Change of Plans

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If you guys follow my Instagram Stories, you would have seen that we were in the process of planning a trip to Italy for the end of September. We hadn’t booked our tickets though because we needed to figure out exactly how long we wanted to go for & exactly which cities we wanted to visit this time around.

Well, we’ve had a slight change of plans & are so excited about it because one of my best friends is now getting married the end of September in New York! While they’ve been engaged for a little while, they hadn’t set a date yet because of their work schedules. I’m so happy that we didn’t book our tickets to Italy (we would have obviously canceled them for the wedding) & I’m beyond excited to see two of the best people I know get married!! If you saw my Instagram Stories, you know that I’m going to be a bridesmaid & our boys are going to be ring bearers & I got all teary eyed when I opened the package asking us! I’m such a sap when it comes to things these days (having 2 kids & crazy hormone changes will do that to you haha) 🙂

With that said, we will now be in NYC the end of September & will plan for Italy at a later date. If you are from Italy or are very familiar with the weather, when would the next best time be to go to Rome & the Amalfi Coast? Should we wait until the end of Spring/beginning of Summer 2018?

ALSO, since we won’t be going to Italy, we’re planning another trip somewhere tropical & warm for October or November. What are your guys’ favorite tropical destinations?!

Best Food Venice

Best Food in Venice, CA

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We’ve been exploring as much as possible lately & one of our favorite places to go nearby is Venice. There is such a great vibe in Venice because there are so many different types of people in the area. We love to walk down Abbot Kinney for amazing restaurants & some of the cutest shops you’ll ever find. I’ll be honest though, when exploring any area, my favorite thing to experience is the food 🙂 So, I decided to share some of our favorite places that we can’t stay away from because they are THAT delicious!

Food Venice California

1.) Gjelina – This is a favorite of locals & visitors alike because the food & ambiance are incredible. This is perfect for meat-eaters as well as vegetarians, which is nice because there is something for everyone. I highly recommend the pizza but I don’t think you can go wrong with anything on their menu.

2.) Salt & Straw – I might have cried happy tears when Salt & Straw finally made its way to LA from Portland. This is hands down one of my favorite spots for ice cream! The Roasted Strawberry & Toasted White Chocolate, Sea Salt with Caramel Ribbons and the Honey Lavender are just a few of my favorites. I have never known anyone who has tried this place & not fallen in love.

3.) Cafe Gratitude – Don’t be afraid of this plant-based menu! I honestly can’t get enough of this place & would eat here daily if I lived nearby. I love the Squash Quesadillas, Mexican Bowl, Veggie Burger & Corn Tacos!

4.) Moon Juice – One of my all-time favorite places for smoothies & juices. I love their Strawberry Almond Milk, Custom Smoothies & their different “Dust” has become an obsession, I use them almost daily at home! Pop in for a juice or smoothie & head down to the boardwalk/beach, you won’t be disappointed!

These are obviously just a few of my most frequented places in Venice because there are SO many more amazing places to dine but I hope you enjoyed hearing which spots are my favorite!

Jouer High Pigment Lip Gloss

Away With Jouer

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There have been a few experiences over my blogging career that I’ve had to stop & pinch myself to see if this is real life. This trip to Ojai with Jouer Cosmetics was one of those experiences.

I don’t know if I say it often enough but I truly am beyond thankful for each & every one of you who take the time to follow along with the content I create. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you all & I never take that for granted. From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU.

jouer high pigment swatch champs elysees lip gloss swatch

I’m not going to lie, I haven’t shopped in American Eagle in years & years. I walked past the store in Century City here in LA & a few things caught my eye. I’m so glad I decided to go in because I fell in love with this matching set. It is the epitome of summer for me & I would wear it daily if I could! You can find it HERE.

jouer lip gloss swatch Jouer Lip GlossI received so many compliments on this Floral Dress & think it’s perfect for summer!

I had the most amazing little getaway with Jouer in Ojai. We stayed at the Ojai Valley Inn (if you ever go, you must have a spa treatment done! I had a massage & it was one of the best massages I have ever received!). They took a group of us to celebrate the launch of their new High Pigment Lip Gloss & guys, I am blown away by the formula! This is honestly the best formula I have ever tried for lip gloss. When they say that they are high pigment, they mean that they are high pigment. You can see just how amazing they are in this tutorial! I could go on & on about them because I truly love them that much BUT I will let the formula & pigmentation speak for themselves. If you’re curious, I have been living in the color Champs-Elysees 🙂

I just want to say thank you to the entire Jouer team. It’s rare to meet so many kind & incredible people in one place but they all are just beyond lovely. Thank you guys (especially Christina) for all of the support & love over the years. I appreciate it more than you will ever know!

 

Fujifilm Instax

Fujifilm Instax Vegas Trip

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If you follow along on Instagram, you probably saw my Las Vegas adventure with Fujifilm Instax for our #InstaxUSTour. Honestly, this trip was one of the best trips I’ve ever been on! We were completely spoiled & I got to experience it all with some amazing babes who went from strangers to friends in a matter of hours. Seriously though, everyone we met kept asking how long we had been friends for & were shocked when we said less than 24 hours haha!

I’ve been obsessed with Fujifilm Instax cameras for years (who doesn’t love those cute Instax photos!?) & I loved that we were able to bring ours all around the city & snap fun photos of our trip. As you can see from these photos, we had the privilege of doing some incredible activities! The Neon Sign Museum & The Billboard Awards were 2 things that I was able to check off my bucket list & both were more incredible than I could have imagined!

I hope you enjoy these photos from our adventure in Vegas with Fujifilm Instax! Special thanks to The Palms for hosting us in a killer 2-story suite with a private pool, STK for the yummiest food, the Neon Museum for the best photo shoot, Grand Canyon Airlines for the coolest tour AND of course Fujifilm Instax for the BEST TRIP!!